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On its own, the ROG Flow X13 is reminiscent of Asus’ Flip notebooks, albeit drenched in gamer sauce. This matte black, corrugated 13.4 ”inch laptop is 1.58 centimeters thick, weighs 1.3 kilograms and, just like the Flip systems, can be completely folded into a robust tablet. The big difference between Flow and Flip is mainly in the performance. Apart from the external GPU – the ROG XG Mobile – this miniscule system is also richly equipped in gaming-oriented hardware.
Prices and internal components may vary depending on version, but today we mainly cover one of the more luxurious Flow models. This is the heaviest-equipped ROG Flow X13, which, together with the ROG XG Mobile module, has a target price of 3,299 euros.
David and Goliath in one
Despite its small size, the Flow X13 promises gigantic gaming results. This urge to perform is already reflected in the included touch display. This sturdy screen panel provides the system with a razor-sharp 4k resolution at 16:10 ratio (3840 x 2400 pixels), with a refresh rate of 60 hertz. Smoothly mapping fancy games to that amount of pixels is not the least task. But Republic of Gamers is not short of the right components.
ROG Flow X13 (GV301QH-K5232T) – Tech Specs
· Display : 13.4 ”WQUXGA @ 60Hz, 85% DCI-P3, Adaptive -Sync
· Processor : AMD Ryzen 9 5980HS @ 3.1 GHz (Boost up to 4.5 GHz)
· Video Card : Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 (4GB GDDR6, 32W tdp)
· Memory : 32GB LPDDR4X @ 4266MHz
· Storage : 1TB PCIe 3.0 ssd
· Keyboard : Tenkeyless chiclet keys, backlit, N-key rollover
Speakers : 2 x 1 watt woofer (Smart AMP)
I / O : 1 x USB a 3.2 (Gen 2), 2 x usb-c 3.2 (Gen 2), hdmi 2.0b, 3.5mm (combo) audio jack, ROG XG Mobile interface
· Wireless : Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.1
· Power Supply : 100 Watt USB-C adapter
· Battery : 62 WHrs 4-cell Li-ion
· Dimensions: 29.9 x 22.2 x 1.56 centimeters
Weight : 1.3 kilograms
· Target price : 3,299 euros (including ROG XG Mobile)
The Flow X13 becomes powered by the AMD Ryzen 9 5980HS (at 3.1 GHz, Boost up to 4.8 GHz), which is about the heaviest mobile CPU available today. In addition, the ultrabook has a spacious 32GB of on-board LPDDR4X memory and 1TB of NVME (PCIe Gen 3.0) SSD storage. Graphics amplification comes from the included Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 (4GB GDDR6), which can be powered with the ROG Boost at 35 watts.
A GTX 1650 will take you a long way in terms of game performance nowadays. With the mobile budget card you can easily grab a game of Overwatch or Rainbow Six: Siege, but next-gen graphics are too much for this GPU – let alone at 4k resolutions. This will not make a dent in that nicer package of butter.
Should you still want to brave tougher gaming sessions, the ROG XG Mobile comes in. This relatively portable block provides ROG Flow X13 with a bizarre power up.
An external graphics card like no other
With a mobile variant of the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 (or even RTX 3080) on board, the ROG XG Mobile is an eGPU like no other . The standard for external graphics cards is often to remain stationary, but ROG XG Mobile is meant to travel with the Flow X13. The module comes in loose at 1 kilogram, is no bigger than a sturdy book and is very easy to connect to the central system.
ROG XG Mobile (GC31S) – Tech Specs
· Video Card : Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 @ 1720 MHz (8GB GDDR6, up to 140 W tdp)
Compatibility : Exclusive with ROG Flow X13 Laptops
Data Cable : Combined USB-C 3.2 and PCIe Gen 3 x8 interface
· Nutrition: 280 Watt AC Power Connector
· I / O : 4x USB a 3.2 (Gen 1), SD reader (UHS-II)
Display ports : HDMI 2.0b (up to 4k / 60Hz), DisplayPort 1.4 (up to 8k / 60Hz, G-Sync)
Network : Gigabit Lan ( 1000 Mbps) over RJ-45 connector
Dimensions : 20.8 x 15.5 x 2.96 centimeters
Weight : 1 kilogram (excluding cables)
ROG XG Mobile must be equipped with its own mains power supply, but can thus provide the built-in GPU with a considerable boost. This RTX 3070 (8GB GDDR6) draws 1720 MHz at 125 watts, with the absolute ceiling at 140 watts. That is quickly twice the wattage that could have been pumped from a slim laptop to such a card. Because the module stands on its own and has its own cooling elements, the computing power can also be used more efficiently.
All that graphic splendor, along with a hefty zipper, becomes extra I / O possibilities are squeezed into the Flow X13 through a single proprietary interface. You anchor the two subsystems together using a large, lockable connector. A reboot is not even necessary; the Flow X13 switches to extra computing power in a few seconds. Apart from two clicks on a taskbar icon, the same goes for disconnecting.
Somehow you wish ROG XG Mobile could be connected to any Windows system, but By passing Thunderbolt, Republic of Gamers is keeping the unique eGPU to itself for now. Incidentally, the proprietary PCIe 3.0 x8 interface clocks up to 63 Gbps data speeds – over one and a half times faster than what is possible with Thunderbolt.
Performance as a total package
Of course, along with ROG XG Mobile, ROG Flow X13 does smash the whole packet of butter. By quickly attaching the external module to the system, you can clock next-gen performance in no time. With an Ampere card like this, at full power, you can easily run Cyberpunk 2077 or Control at beautiful 4k resolutions with DLSS 2.0. Higher graphics settings and ray tracing options are suddenly within reach.
In those gaming sessions, you understand why this laptop has an almost exaggerated pixel density. The external GPU simply pumps enough power to use it. The 116% coverage of the sRGB color scale and Pantone validated color profiles help the images come to life all the more. The screen is not very bulky, but the images are sharper and, above all, fuller in color than you would expect in this format.
If you still want to use a larger or faster screen, the ROG XG Mobile offers more options. It is not without reason that the external module offers many useful ports that have been saved on the ultrabook. Per DisplayPort 1.4 port, you can convert all that graphics power to a maximum of 4k / 120Hz or even 8k / 60Hz images, which are of course not feasible from only the ROG Flow X13 and the included HDMI 2.0b interface.
On almost all fronts, ROG Flow X13 sets itself up as an exceptionally portable total package. In pure image performance it is not inferior to a desktop, but this whole set-up fits in your backpack and is battle-ready in less than a minute and a half. The Flow X13 would be the ideal system for easily braving LAN parties – should they return.
A cool powerhouse in its own right
Apart from the unique external computing power, the ROG Flow X13 also convinces as a versatile ultrabook. The 4k graphics and ray tracing come exclusively with ROG XG Mobile, but the slim system stands its ground on its own.
The included Zen 3 processor from AMD is a beast of efficient multi-threading performance and with 32GB of RAM at 4266 MHz, multitasking is almost a must. The internal hardware is more than sufficient for productive use and even heavy content production. Remarkably, the compressed hardware does not generate too much heat, let alone noise.
Despite the narrow build of the Flow X13, ASUS does not seem to deliver on their solid promises in cooling. With Liquid Metal as an induction medium, two full-size fans and a self-cleaning cooling module, the system can also withstand heavier loads.
Add to this that this slim device takes all its power from a USB-C port pulls, and you understand how flexible the Flow X13 can be. Even in the most mobile form you can already work quite a bit on this and possibly play some games. Without power, the 62 Whr battery can easily last a day of productive use. That won’t always suffice for a big gaming session, but the best performance is never far out of reach with ROG XG Mobile.
Is the ROG Flow X13 the most mobile battle station ever?
Republic of Gamers’ latest experiment has certainly been successful. On its own, the ROG Flow X13 is already a very powerful and versatile device, but together with the ROG XG Mobile it creates a progressive whole. Rarely has a complete next-gen system like this been so easy to lug around. With a beautiful screen and surprising efficiency in next-gen components, this is a piece of hardware like no other.
What may be missing from the whole is simply a broader implementation. The modular concept has been proven – now it needs to expand further. For the demanding esporter, for example, a Flow X13 with 2k resolution at 120 hertz would look even better at the average LAN party.
On the other hand, it may also be worthwhile for Asus to use the ROG XG Mobile in a broader sense. support. Alternative versions to, for example, the Thunderbolt interface could, in theory, provide every notebook with a graphical upgrade. In many ways this is like a separate laptop GPU in optima forma; more people will undoubtedly want to benefit from this. There may be more gamer hearts here for Asus to conquer. For now, the ‘mobile battle station’ is a title exclusive to the ROG Flow X13.